A long-standing stalwart of the NSW Rural Fire Service for more than 40 years who has dedicated decades to volunteering with local community groups has been named the 2021 Citizen of the Year at today’s official Australia Day ceremony in Singleton.
Fred Turner received the distinction in recognition of his role with the RFS as Group Officer Hunter Valley, as well as his work with a range of organisations including Singleton Legacy Group, the Australian Infantry Museum, Singleton Lions Club and Singleton RSL Sub-Branch.
The announcement was made during the official COVID-safe ceremony at Singleton Civic Centre this morning, which was livestreamed to the community to witness six new Australians welcomed in the Citizenship Ceremony and the Australia Day Guest address by Charles Croucher.
Mr Croucher is a Channel 9 reporter and a former North American Correspondent, covering everything from natural disasters, the Oscars red carpet and super bowls to the impeachment of former US President Donald Trump. Now based in Sydney, he has a strong family connection to Singleton.
Mayor of Singleton, Cr Sue Moore said although the celebration was a little different this year, it was great to see many people tuning in for the livestream of the ceremony to recognise the people who make our community special.
“Australia Day is a great occasion to come together to celebrate what we all have in common as Australians, and to recognise the privileges and freedoms that come with Australian citizenship,” she said.
“It’s a very significant occasion for the six people from all over the world – India, The Philippines, Papua New Guinea and the UK – who chose to become Australians in Singleton, and I was honoured to be part of it.”
She also paid tribute to the five outstanding nominees for the Citizen of the Year.
“Australia Day has become a tradition to recognise those Australians among us who go a little bit further to make our community great, and it’s one of the most humbling parts of my role as mayor to present the Citizen of the Year award,” Cr Moore said.
“I sincerely congratulate Fred Turner on this prestigious honour, and thank our other four nominees – Jan Fallding, Wendy Lawson, Kenneth Mackett and Kay Sullivan – for all you do for our community.”